Agile and lean fads are the new excuses for brittle software

Now that many are looking for ways to cut costs and maximize the benefits out of their shrunk budget, there is no shortage of offers about how to do just that. Among those offers are the agile and lean software development methods, which are quickly becoming the norm rather than the exception in the IT…

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A way to specify behavior

The modern name for an ancient programming technique —which roots can be traced back to Dr. E.W. Dijkstra*— was “test-first programming” and didn’t preclude, in any sense, the need of validation and verification testing, done by an independent group of people with a different mindset and goals (whereas programmers want to release the best possible…

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Faculties offer courses and lectures freely

The University of Washington, the Computer Science & Engineering department —as other faculties like MIT and Stanford with programs like MIT OpenCourseWare and Stanford Engineering Everywhere— offers videos recordings of selected lectures and course materials. This is great for those interested in learning and further improvement. For example, recently (October 21, 2008) Joe Duffy from…

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Adaptive Methods for reality

The attitude of mind to approach reality that has helped humans to explain and to predict phenomena (observed facts) consistently and precisely, the scientific mindset, is one among those things computer professionals could adopt to better understand software development fundamentals. There are two somehow conflicting aspects of the scientific attitude that make it so compelling…

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A lawful name for a profession

There is a discussion about the legitimacy of the word ‘architecture’ in software development profession here. Craftsmanship would be a better, more down-to-reality, term. In addition, the use of the word ‘engineering’ also has important implications in places like Canada, along with a number of controversies about it. Art is not just aesthetics. The essence…

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Most of people around are not doing eXtreme Programming, should I try it?

If billions of people believe something, does that alone make it a justified true belief? Please, try for yourself eXtreme Programming techniques or whichever else design technique you found, and bring your findings and insights for discussion. Also please, disregard the frequent plea for “the real world”, the real world is what we all do,…

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Paving the history of our trade

Which could possibly be the most common mistake on the history of the adoption of iterative and incremental development? Craig Larman proposes an answer to such a question in his book Agile and Iterative Development: A Manager’s Guide: “Sure, we don’t apply the waterfall—everyone knows it doesn’t work. We’ve adopted <iterative method X> and are…

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The new hells have been nurtured, by now they are alive and well

“Want me to adopt your solution? Let’s clarify first which are the new problems it brings on” -a conscious customer The very presence of a solution to a problem brings on new kind of problems, ad infinitum. That is another way to say that there always will be room for improvement. That is why, when…

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The interplay of art and science in software

I have found an article with a sound explanation of the interplay of art and science with software development, enjoy: The interplay of art and science in softwareTerry BollingerIEEE ComputerVolume 30, Issue 10, Oct. 1997 Page(s):128, 125 – 127

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Will mankind exist on Earth 100,000 years from now?

It is hard to say based on self-destructive trends in us. Help are available in several forms. Science is one, not as a system of beliefs taken religiously but as an attitude of the mind. Taken this way, I appreciate the following quote in full: “One thing I have learned in a long life: that…

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